Father in law drinks and is difficult
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|Fri, 03-28-2003 - 10:07am|
My husband and I have been married for two years, and have a son 18months...My husband’s stepfather (my father in law) has been a cause of anxiety for me from day one. The first time I met him was at dinner with his wife (my husband's mother). He had been drinking a lot, and to make a long story short, was cracking rude jokes all night, was insulting to his wife, the waiter, and just made me very uncomfortable. I tried to make the best of it by making light of the situation, and tried to smile whenever possible. My husband, who was my boyfriend at the time, acted like nothing was wrong, and so did his mother (they just deal with it). It’s important to note, that the father in law thought the night went just fine.
Since that night, there have been many other occasions that I have experienced this behavior, from him, and my husband and mother-in-law (nonchalance/ non-confrontational) from them). The Father in-law is a stubborn man, and he generally is a hard-liner, who is hard to confront. Now that we have a child, it makes matters even worse. His parents watch our 18 month-old two days a week, and on several occasions I have smelled alcohol on my father in-law's breath when I have picked my son up. I should note however, that my son is always only supervised from the grandmother, who I have to admit, is a really nice person to me and my son, and I feel confidant, that she is a good caregiver to him while I’m at work.
The father-in law I speak about, can be nice and pleasant at times however, but I can’t shake the feelings I have from this Dr. Jekle Mr Hyde. Therefore I usually have anxiety when we go over to visit the in-laws, and generally don’t like being around him. But I try to do my best for my husband.
Lately, however, it seems that my husband’s parents have been sensing my anxiety and uneasy feelings about going over there, and confronted me the other day. The father in law started yelling at me saying that I was disrespectful to them and always rushing in and out and not being very “family like”. I was late picking up my son one night and called my husband to see if he could pick my son up, but my husband wasn’t able to phone soon enough to let them know. I apologized for not phoning in person, and explained why it happened (there was traffic and a storm on my way home from work), and said that I would for sure call next time (this was an isolated incident on my case). I felt like screaming at the father in law, for the sheer hypocrisy of all of it, that he was demanding respect from – me! How about giving some respect to his family and me by not drinking and being rude and generally hard to get along with! But I held my temper, and tried to keep my composure. I did however, explain to him that he was hard to get along with at times, and therefore might mis-intrerpret my actions toward him as being hostile, when I was just trying to deal with the whole situation. His mom walked me out to my car, with my son. And, needles to say I started crying, and told her that I was just sick and tired of the whole thing, and brought up some experiences I had with him in the past, and told her that I didn’t know what the expected of me. How could anyone with any pride be expected to deal with this everyday, and let (the father-in-law) get away with his actions.
I really don’t know what to do anymore, it’s effecting my relationship with my husband, - who basically thinks I am overreacting to everything.
Please help with comments/suggestions.
Edited 3/28/2003 11:14:58 AM ET by mimirk